The Best Horse Shampoo (and Conditioner!) for 2022

Written by Katie Begley
Published: April 12, 2022

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Taking care of a horse requires a lot of time, equipment, and patience. These majestic creatures are wonderful animals and caring for them is a big responsibility. Horses require daily exercise and enrichment. Not only is it great for your horse, but it is also a fun way to connect. All of these adventures can result in one dirty horse who needs a good bath.

We’ve looked at the top horse shampoos and conditioners to help you decide on the best choice for your horse. Using a quality horse shampoo to keep their coat clean keeps them healthier, happier, and looking great. We’ve made our top recommendations and researched the ingredients, cost, and use of each product.

  1. DermaBenSs Shampoo for Horses
  2. DermaBenSs Shampoo for Horses
    • Comes in a variety of size options
    • Works for horses as well as dogs and cats
    • Treats staph infections, hot spots and other skin issues
    • Affordable pricetag
    Check Chewy Check Amazon
  3. Mane 'n Tail Pet Shampoo
  4. Mane 'n Tail Pet Shampoo
    • A top pick for horse owners
    • Affordable price tag
    • Available in multiple sizes
    • Shampoo & conditioner set
    • Enjoyable apple blossom scent
    Check Chewy Check Amazon
  5. Farnam Vetrolin White N' Brite Shampoo
  6. Farnam Vetrolin White N' Brite Shampoo
    • Specific formula for white coats
    • Brightens hair by bringing out highlights
    • Concentrated formula needs to be mixed with water
    • Moisturizes the horse's skin
    • One bottle lasts for 16 washes
    Check Amazon
  7. Pet MD Antiseptic & Antifungal Medicated Horse Shampoo
  8. Pet MD Antiseptic & Antifungal Medicated Horse Shampoo
    • Treats fungus, acne, dermatitis, allergies, and other skin conditions
    • Great option for prolonged use
    • Ideal for issues found in the skin folds
    • Won't dry skin
    Check Chewy Check Amazon
  9. Farnam Vetrolin Horse Detangler & Conditioner
  10. Farnam Vetrolin Horse Detangler & Conditioner
    • Provides added detangling benefits for thick- or curly-coated horses
    • Specially formulated silicone gets tangles out
    • Works great on the man, tail and forelock
    Check Chewy Check Amazon

1. Overall Horse Shampoo: DermaBenSs Shampoo for Dogs, Cats, and Horses

In our review, the best horse shampoo is DermaBenSs Shampoo for Dogs, Cats, and Horses. It comes in a 12-ounce bottle, as well as larger quantities if you want to buy in bulk. It can work for dogs, cats, and horses, perfect for farm life with multiple animals. The formula works for all stages of your horse’s life so you can use it from the time that they join your family.

The ingredients in the DermaBenSs shampoos are very clean and target a number of common needs. This formula can treat staph infections, hot spots, bacterial infections, lick granulomas, and other problems. It also works for dry scalp and damaged hair, with plenty of moisturizers included.

Some reviewers use it for targeted spots due to its higher cost than some other options. “This is the best shampoo,” said one reviewer. “I use it for my horses’ faces. During the summer they’ll occasionally lose hair around their eyes. This seems to fix it right away.” While it is great to use on the entire coat, targeting the areas where you usually see issues can be a budget-friendly way to work it into your horse’s grooming routine.

Most reviewers noted that it worked much better when they really worked the suds into their animal’s coat. It suds up well but you really need to work at it to get the full effect. Make sure that you also thoroughly rinse the shampoo out or you may see some residue build up over time.

Best Overall
DermaBenSs Shampoo for Horses
  • Comes in a variety of size options
  • Works for horses as well as dogs and cats
  • Treats staph infections, hot spots and other skin issues
  • Affordable pricetag
Check Chewy Check Amazon

2. Best for Budgets: Mane ‘n Tail Shampoo and Conditioner

This top-seller is a favorite among experienced horse owners and their animals for a reason. It works great for many animals and is a budget-friendly pick. It is available in multiple sizes, including a combo shampoo and conditioner set. This shampoo and conditioner set targets damaged hair and dry scalps to provide all the moisture your horse needs. The conditioner can even be used as a leave-in product to really target dry skin issues.

The apple blossom scent of the Mane ‘n Tail shampoo is another reason reviewers loved it so much. In fact, many even use it on themselves, their children, their indoor pets, and their horses. Some people have it in their homes and don’t even have horses! If you want an affordable shampoo that keeps moisture in and repairs broken hair, this is a great pick.

Best for Budget
Mane 'n Tail Pet Shampoo
  • A top pick for horse owners
  • Affordable price tag
  • Available in multiple sizes
  • Shampoo & conditioner set
  • Enjoyable apple blossom scent
Check Chewy Check Amazon

3. Best for White Coats: Farnam Vetrolin White N’ Brite Deep Cleaning and Color Brightening Shampoo for Horses and Dogs

Horses with white coats can show more dirt on their coat, even when they are clean. Some horse shampoos keep their white coats dingy so many horse owners look for a specialized product made for white horses. Farnam Vetrolin works for both light and dark coats. On light coats, it brightens the hair and helps it appear clean and healthy. It brings out highlights on dark coats and enhances the shine. Coconut oil in the formula also helps the brightening agents work and adds moisture to your horse’s skin.

This is a concentrated formula so you will need to mix it with water. One bottle works for up to 16 washes on most horses. You can also use it to target specific stains on the legs or body. Leave it on your horse’s coat for a full 5 minutes to get the full effect and brightening power. You should also make sure to mix it thoroughly with water and not apply it directly to your horse’s hair. “To avoid a purple striped horse, either pour the soap into a bucket with water and scrub the horse like you would a car, or work the soap into a lather in your hands before applying to your horse,” said one reviewer. After following these steps with his horse, he said “it made him glow! Absolutely amazing.”

Best for White Coats
Farnam Vetrolin White N' Brite Shampoo
  • Specific formula for white coats
  • Brightens hair by bringing out highlights
  • Concentrated formula needs to be mixed with water
  • Moisturizes the horse's skin
  • One bottle lasts for 16 washes
Check Amazon

4. Best Antifungal: PetMD Antiseptic and Antifungal Medicated Shampoo for Cats, Dogs, and Horses

One concern that horse owners need to be aware of is fungal infections. If you are treating your horse for infections, skin problems, acne, or dermatitis, the PetMD medicated shampoo is a great choice. Chlorhexidine Gluconate and Ketoconazole help target these problems and provide relief. Some reviewers actually tried this shampoo before resorting to costly medications and found that it solved skin problems like minor infections and dermatitis.

This shampoo is great for prolonged and targeted use. We recommend it for use in skin fold areas to keep them free from problems without drying the skin. If your horse has a known allergy, this is a great option. “My horse has had an ongoing issue with a ‘spot’ of hair loss on his face. Have tried other products, but very slow,” said one reviewer. “After two weeks of this shampoo, almost total regrowth of hair in the spot area. I’m thrilled!”

Best Antifungal
Pet MD Antiseptic & Antifungal Medicated Horse Shampoo
  • Treats fungus, acne, dermatitis, allergies, and other skin conditions
  • Great option for prolonged use
  • Ideal for issues found in the skin folds
  • Won't dry skin
Check Chewy Check Amazon

5. Best Horse Conditioner: Farnam Vetrolin Detangler and Conditioner

Horses with thick coats or curly hair may benefit from additional detangling and conditioning to keep their coats in tip-top shape. The Farnam Vetrolin detangler uses specially formulated silicone to get tangles and snarls out. You can use it on your horse’s entire coat but it is especially effective on manes and tails.

Reviewers noted that this was a thick product, perfect for getting snarls, tangles, and even plant life out of your horse’s coat. “I alternate between Vetrolin and Cowboy Magic detanglers for my Percheron with a very thick mane, tail, and forelock,” said one horse owner. “This product is the thicker of the two and I always feel like I end up using more product. However, it lasts longer in her hair.” If you or your horse dislike this chore, finding a product that will make it go faster and last longer is perfect. 

Best Conditioner
Farnam Vetrolin Horse Detangler & Conditioner
  • Provides added detangling benefits for thick- or curly-coated horses
  • Specially formulated silicone gets tangles out
  • Works great on the man, tail and forelock
Check Chewy Check Amazon

Choosing the Best: What to Look For

When deciding on the best horse shampoo, consider your horse’s coat, any medical or skin issues, and your overall budget. We’ve looked into all of these factors in more detail.

Horse’s Coat

While many horse shampoos can work for a variety of horses, dogs, cats, and even people, it is helpful to consider the color and texture of your horse’s coat to get the best product for them. Horses with white coats benefit from a shampoo that is specially formulated for white or light hair. Horses with very thick coats that are prone to tangling may need something that is thicker or a specialized detangling product.

Medical and Skin Issues

Your horse’s shampoo is a great way to treat and prevent minor skin irritations and infections. Some problems that can be treated by using a medicated shampoo include dermatitis, allergies, staph infection, fungal infections, and acne. Hot spots and hair loss can also improve by using shampoos formulated to help these issues. If your horse is prone to these problems, using a medicated shampoo routinely can prevent flare-ups. You can also use medicated shampoo to treat issues as they come up.

Cost

Horse shampoo doesn’t have to be super expensive, especially if you buy larger quantities or use a subscribe and save program. Horse shampoo is often concentrated and can be mixed with water for application. Some shampoos even require this. If a high-end specialty shampoo is out of your budget, consider using it where and when it is needed and opting for a more budget-friendly all-purpose option for the rest of your horse’s coat.

The Different Types of Horse Shampoo: Pros and Cons Compared

Horse shampoos come in a variety of types but we’ve looked at the two main options: all-purpose and specialty shampoos. Each has clear pros and cons for use.

All-Purpose Horse Shampoo

ProsCons
Often cheaperDoesn’t treat skin issues
Can use on other animals and petsNot as many targeted ingredients
Easier to find

Specialty Horse Shampoo

ProsCons
Can treat skin problemsUsually only targets one issue
Great for thick hairMore expensive
Cheaper than prescription medications

Verified Review: User Experience

Our top pick, the DermaBenSs shampoo, gets rave reviews from a lot of pet owners. It is especially popular with those who are trying to treat skin issues and reactions. “She had scabs all over just small ones but the itching was making her pull her fur out in clumps,” said one cat owner who tried the DermaBenSs shampoo. “In three days all scabs were gone, she was doing her regular grooming and her coat was soft and shiny. Since her coat has grown back in and she’s once again beautiful and shiny.”

Mane ‘n Tail is a great product that works for people and animals. One reviewer tried it for herself first, knowing it would also work for pets. “I love this stuff,” the reviewer wrote. “The smell isn’t overbearing and it gets the job done. Plus if I was weird I could also shower with my dog and could use the shampoo for him and me.”

Products For This Review

About the Author

Katie is a freelance writer and teaching artist specializing in home, lifestyle, and family topics. Her work has appeared in At Ease Magazine and The Spruce, among others. When she is not writing, Katie teaches Creative Writing at Indian Creek School and was awarded an Author Fellowship to Martha's Vineyard Institute of Creative Writing. She also enjoys spending time with her three kids and cat.